Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Ugh part 2.

I get home, and it was one of those days at home - it had been hard. My family asked for pizza. So we ordered pizza. Man, that stuff smells good.

I ate a salad.

I'm not kidding.

And I'm down another pound.

It was hard, driving home and smelling it, and then sitting there with my family while they ate it. But somehow I have to be able to make these hard decisions, these hard choices, if I'm going to make any lasting changes.

Off to work again. I'm hoping that the lunch for training today will be better. But even if not, I can do this.

Monday, September 28, 2015


Well, all is going just fine. And then today happens. I'm in training today at work. They brought in lunch. I partook of more than I should have.

It's not a huge setback - it's actually going to be well within my calories for the day - it's more the principle of the thing. I have to make sure that I'm in control of what I eat at all times. Otherwise, it will start to spiral out of control again.

I'm  thinking that tonight I need to get out and get some exercise in - which is easy, because I'm going to be clearing out some flower gardens in the front lawn and disposing of the extra dirt and stuff.

Then for dinner I'll see if I can pull a nice big salad with some sort of grilled chicken. That should put me where I want to be today.

I hate feeling out of control. So I'm going to ratchet the control down again.

Speaking of that - still no bar-shaped food since last week. That one was hard a few times over the weekend, but I'm sticking to that one.

I think I need to talk a bit about exercise. The next post.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Another weigh in.

Not official, mind you, but down another 1.3 pounds since last Sunday. I'll take that and run with it.

Sometimes I sit in front of a blank blog post and words just seem to flow. Sometimes it's like today. I don't feel that I have anything earth-shattering enough.

Still, I want to try to keep some semblance of regularity and accountability. So here I am again.

Keeping up the good fight against the glorified candy bars. I'm finding that it's not even so much that they are so good - but it's more that they are so very convenient.

So not much today, but I'm here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Avoiding the bars, and small amounts of travel.

As exactly nobody reading this blog knows, I'm a teetotaler, so the bars I'm referring to are the ones from yesterday's post. When I got home from work, that stupid Nature Valley Candy Bar box was calling my name.

Sweet and Salty

Those are the ones that I'm talking about. There are 12 grams of sugar in there. I'm not talking carbohydrates. Sugar. In something that will do next to nothing to fill me up. It certainly does a lot to trigger certain responses in my brain, though.

Oh, I know - they are loved. If you love them and they work to help you - by all means, go ahead! My only point is that for me, these are an enormous mistake.

On three separate times, I found myself reaching into the box without thinking about it. All three times I remembered yesterday's vow to avoid food in bar form, and I put it back. But it's the fact that I grabbed it before I even realized what I was doing.


I missed breakfast altogether yesterday. That wasn't good. I'm a software engineer, and while it does lend itself to mindless munching if I let there be food at my desk, it also lends itself to being lost inside my code and inside my head, making hours pass before realizing where it went. That happened yesterday. By the time I looked up, it was 11:00, so I just waited the extra half hour for the cafeteria to open.

Indian butter chicken...mmmm...the calories on that aren't bad, if you eat a normal portion, by the way.

After work my wife and I went to support my oldest kid at a marching band competition. It was a lot of fun! Food avoidance was easy again. Except for the ladies next to us eating Cafe Rio something-or-other. HOLY COW it smelled good.

But my plan is slowly working. Slowly but surely. It's getting easier to say no, as long as I say on a roll and don't eat the crap that will bring the cravings back.

Now if only the scale would budge. I wonder if there's something wrong with it. ;)

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Alive and kickin'!

Weekends are notoriously bad for me to be able to blog - I'm usually just so dang busy with everything going on in my life. Take last Friday night/Saturday - I was out camping with a bunch boy Boy Scouts. (I'm a Scoutmaster). It was a fantastic time.

Eating, on campouts, is actually very easy for me. Low-fat hot dogs (skip the buns) and a bunch of fruit and I'm good to go. The kids enjoy some s'mores usually, but I'm not that enamored with them, so there you go.

Weight is down again - officially, I'm down over 22 pounds. Unofficially, it's probably more like 25-26. These are the times when I wish I WOULD have weighed and gotten the highest number. :) Still, I'm heading in the right direction and I don't have any intention of stopping.

I do need to take a bit of personal inventory about snacking. It's always hard to admit when things start going wrong - but I would rather start talking about it now when it's minor issues than later when it's a day of (and I'm not joking - this has happened in the past) 4 donuts, 2 bags of chips, 80 oz of full sugar soda, and a bag (the 1 lb bag) of peanut M & Ms.

So about yesterday...

I had some fruit for breakfast, due to bad planning, in that I didn't get any protein. That usually keeps me full for much longer. It was 80 calories of flavor grenades.

Lunch was good - some brown rice and asparagus with a small portion of homemade sweet & sour chicken. About 300 calories.

So when I get home from work, I've had less than 400 calories for the day. NOT optimal - I do much better when I spread my calories out better than that.

So there's this Costco-sized box of Nature Valley Peanut something-or-other granola bars. They are GOOD.

So over the evening, I had three.

With a light dinner and some moderate exercise for the day, I stayed well within my calorie goal for the day.

But there is something unsettling about going back for another granola bar (which is, let's face it, a glorified candy bar) even though you know you shouldn't.

What this means is that it's time to ratchet things down a bit further. Yet again. I'm not going to go "no refined carbs" again yet, but for the moment, all kinds of "bar" food - that is, food in bar form, is verboten. I have been doing VERY well without granola bars. I think that I'll be able to be just fine without them for the next, oh, say, month at least.

Actually, make that until November. If I can get through Halloween without eating any "bars", that will mean that no Halloween candy will have been consumed. And while I don't yet know what I want my attitude to be towards sugar for the long run, I do know that this year I really don't want to deal with candy.

So there you go. Personal inventory out there for everyone to see. Kinda glad I did it. Now to go find breakfast again. More Flavor Grenades, but this time with a cheese stick? Sounds good.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Anyone ever heard of a Flavor Grenade?

I think I mentioned them in my post on Tuesday, but forgot to get back to talking about them.

They are a variety of pluot - an incredibly sweet/tart combination of a plum and an apricot. Because of an apparently very short growing season, they are only available for about a month or so RIGHT NOW, and even then I've only ever found them at one farmer's market about 30 miles from my home. I'm obsessed with them.

Ate three of them just now. Can't think of a better breakfast while they're in season.

Seriously. They are that good.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Pizza, Cake, and cravings.

Well, all of our birthdays, anniversaries, and other celebrations around the Crutherton household appear to be done for a while. Yes, there's Halloween coming, but I don't see that as a hard one to get through. I do have a couple of short vacations - but with good planning, I'm hoping to be able to come through unscathed. Thanksgivings (both Canadian and American) are nearing as well, but Thanksgiving isn't traditionally hard for me to do well either. Christmas is a bit harder, but I've got time to further ingrain my habits before we get there.

But I did indulge in a total of two pieces of pizza and two (small) pieces of cake between Monday and Tuesday. Total. I have to say that I was a bit worried about what it was going to do to me. I worry about having my addiction to sugar start taking over again.

So far so good. I haven't had anything that I would call extra cravings. Other than really always wanting to eat copious amounts of terrible food. But I guess the difference is that for some reason, right now, I'm able to restrain myself.

Yes, I joined a 6-month dietbet. But I am not willing to say that this is what is keeping my motivation up. To tell you the truth, I'm not even sure what it is, other than I'm seeing a lot of good changes in how clothes fit, etc. Being down almost 25 pounds will do that.

What is the difference between now and three months ago? Three months ago I would come in to work with way too much crappy food that I had bought and started consuming on the drive to work, and then continue eating until I left to go home. Add to that heading out for food in between...it was bad stuff.

But now? It seems relatively easy.

This brings me right back to the sugar addiction thing. Is this really the game changer? I don't know. I do know that there were many times that I'd tell myself at night that I wasn't going to the store in the morning for more crap just to find myself walking out of the store already eating without having thought about it. Or making yet another justification as to why today wasn't the day to start. Just today. I'll do better tomorrow.

I'm talking myself into thinking that this just might be it.

Anyway, more introspection ahead. I need to keep on top of this if I want to make this change last.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Quick update...

Been very busy with the weekend, my daughter's birthday yesterday, and then a ton of work today. But things are going well.

Had a couple of pieces of pizza yesterday, and a piece of cake. I did NOT go over calories, I ditched the ice cream, and ate a ton of Flavor Grenades (I'll talk about them later). I was pretty worried about my cravings today, but really, nothing. I'm pleased.

Down another pound or so. Not as fast as I would like, but it's going DOWN. Love that part.

I'll write more tomorrow.

Friday, September 11, 2015

It's a comfort, actually.

I know it's stupid. I know that I am not burning more calories or taking more steps now that I have a device back on my arm again. And yet, it is a comfort to me to have the numbers.

Slightly disappointing yesterday as well. I really should have taken way more steps. But see, that's exactly what kind of information I need to have all the time.

Have I mentioned that I love this fitbit?

I'm still not sure about the all-the-time-constantly-on-heart-rate. There are a lot of times when it seems dead-on accurate. Like right now, sitting here, I'm at 60 BPM. Feeling my pulse, that seems quite accurate. I have seen other times, though, when just sitting here it's up at about 110 BMP.

I'm fairly sure that it has something to do with how I'm wearing it. So I'll see what I can do to normalize where it sits on my arm, how tight, etc.

But for right now, I'm quite happy to have it back. I LOVE having the extra numbers.

Here's to hitting a step goal for today...

Thursday, September 10, 2015

It is here!

The new fitbit surge is here! It's on my wrist. I'll have to get up and walk around every so often now.

It wouldn't be a bad idea anyway. I haven't had anything for breakfast. I should get something from the break room. They've got big bins of fruit that are calling my name.

And yes, I can ignore the cereal. While I am adding back in some carbs, I still find those to be pure crap. I had a granola bar the other day. 100 calories. It did nothing to make my weight worse. But it DID make me crave more granola bars for several hours.

This particular monkey may never be off of my back. I just have to make sure that I stick to the point where I say no before I get back into the hold of addiction again.

Well, not enough steps today yet. Time to go get a few in.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

It's coming today!

At the beginning of the year I decided to try out a new wearable. I ended up buying the Fitbit Surge. It's good - I liked it a lot. I think if I had the chance to choose again I may have gone for the Charge HR, but hey, it's mine and I like it!

However, the charging port hasn't ever worked right. It was always just a little loose. And after several months of use, it would no longer charge.

I called the company and they promptly sent out a replacement charger. Even though I told them that it wasn't the case, they had to try it first.

Well, surprise surprise, it didn't work! So another phone call later they sent out a new unit!

It's arriving sometime today.

Let me tell you - I'm a numbers guy. I love numbers, metrics, measurements, everything about them. So having data on my calorie output is awesome.

I used to have an old Exerspy (think the Body Bugg from BodyMedia, but on Steriods). It was amazing - the data was VERY accurate. When I used its calorie output numbers along with my calorie intake numbers (from food logs), I could predict within 3% what weight I would be.

However...it started breaking down a bit. And with BodyMedia, you had to have a monthly subscription to their service for the exerspy to even work. Did NOT like.

So that's why the switch to the fitbit.

Anyway, here's to getting my numbers daily again...

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

I love me a long weekend...

When you get the chance to grill at a park with family, that is a good thing.

When you get to decide what goes on the grill, that's a better thing.

When you wrap up corn and put it on the coals just under the hot dogs, that's an awesome thing.

Some low-fat dogs, some corn, and a LOT of watermelon makes for a great meal.

Also did a lot of work in the yard yesterday - completely cleaned out the front garden spot, put in some weed/grass killer and a weed barrier, and some artificial wood chips. Looks great, and burned a ton of calories.

It's a lot of fun when things start clicking like this. Yes, I did turn down cupcakes. Yes, I could have eaten a ton more. But when my clothes are fitting better and I have a lot of energy, it finally starts becoming worth it.

Gotta get working, hopefully I'll be back later.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Mini plateau

These things happen. It sucks when you're in the middle of one, but they happen. 5 days ago I was the same weight as I am today. 

And you know what? I'm not even sad. Because I can see how it is working in other ways. Especially the fit of my clothes. So it's all good. 

So I'm still 1.6 pounds away from the 270's, but I'm on my way. It will happen, and probably sooner rather than later. 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

The life of a Software Engineer

My computer is acting up. It won't finish rebooting. So with nothing else to do for the moment, I thought I'd write a post from my phone. 

I appear to be, for now, an all-or-nothing kind of guy. I can either go strict and lose weight, or I'm an all-out all-you-can-stuff-in-the-pie-hole type of guy. This sort of disturbs me. It says some things about my issues with food that frankly I don't really want to think about. And yet, I know that eventually I will. 

What does it mean long-term if I have truly serious addictions to food? What am I going to have to do/change/be to not let that particular demon take charge again?

I'm not yet ready to face it. But I know that I will have to. Soon I will start working on it. 

The steady process.

I had initially typed "the long, slow process." But I like the word steady better. It implies, at least to me, a slower process, but the steadiness also implies long term consistency. That's what I'm shooting for here.

I'm feeling a bit at peace right now in regards to weight. I don't often feel this much peace about it, so I will take it when I can get it.

Boss took us out to lunch today for my 4 year anniversary here at work. It was nice. I did get to choose, so we went to a soup/salad/sandwich place. I ended up getting out of there for about 600 calories. Feeling pretty good about it.

Nothing to earth shattering. Just slow, consistent work.

On the right path again.


Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Official weigh in

Today is the official diet bet first month weigh in. Here it is:

I am pretty pleased with it. I had to be at least 3% down. This is about 5%.

Not bad. Here's to winning next month as well!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Feeling chatty today.

Also feeling a bit hungry, but as I've posted recently, that's no surprise.

I turned down a donut today. I don't feel bad about this. I didn't need it, I didn't want it. That is to say that to me, today, it was worth more for me to NOT eat the donut than to have the sugar rush. In fact, without sugar for about a month now, I'm kind of thinking that it would be too sweet.

It's not about the donut.

I took my family out for ice cream last night. I didn't have any. Again, I didn't need it, I didn't want it.

That's not true. Last night I wanted it. But it was still worth more to me to NOT eat it than to eat it.

I don't know what sort of balance I'm going to end up walking. Might I cut out sugar forever? It's very possible. I don't know. But I do know that sugar is a big problem for me.

More pondering to be done.

Workout successful.

Did 3 miles on a treadmill. I find that I'm able to watch my iPad while running. Right now I'm going through the entire X-Files series as I run. Walk. Plod slowly. Whatever.

I got a good sweat going but didn't push too hard. I'm happy with it.

Side note - I have a Fitbit Surge, but there is something wrong with the charging port. It won't charge at all. The good news is that it is within warranty, and they are sending me a new one. It should get here early next week. So while I have to wait, I'm going to be happy to have more information again about what my calorie output is.

But until then, I'll just have to enter exercise manually.

Until tomorrow...

Time to get some exercise.

The workout didn't happen yesterday. Turns out I left my gym bag at home. That doesn't help when I want to get some momentum going.

For today, then, I made sure as I left the house that I had everything that I'm going to need for today. At 11:00 I'm heading out. We'll see how it goes.

As for loss, down even further this morning. I'm somewhere between 7-8 pounds below where I needed to be for the dietbet weigh-in tomorrow. I'm not sure it would even be possible to weigh too much tomorrow. Without water loading or something.

Still - tomorrow's weigh-in is NOT the end goal. It's the first in what I am hoping turns into a very long series of successes.

Work is calling...

Monday, August 31, 2015

Another day, another loss.

That feels good to be able to say. In the month since I've started this dietbet, I've gone from over 297 (Probably about 300 to 301) to 282.2. Certainly over 15 pounds, probably closer to 16 or 17. That's exactly what I was shooting for. My official dietbet weigh-in is tomorrow. Now in general, I weigh before getting dressed, so the weight may be slightly higher tomorrow, but I don't mind that. So I'll post a picture of my OFFICIAL weigh-in in the morning.

I found last night that one scoop of chocolate protein powder, 1 cup of skim milk, and about a cup or so of frozen strawberries hit with a stick blender is actually pretty darned good. That one's a keeper.

I've been thinking recently about exercise. Probably because I haven't been doing any. I'm going to start getting back on that particular wagon this week. Starting today at lunch. I have decided to raise my calorie intake, just a little, on the days where I actually get to the gym. I'm going to start with a bit of cardio for the next few weeks to make sure to get back into it slowly - walking, with running interspersed. After another few pounds down (10-15 or so, basically until October), I'm going to start adding circuit training again.

I have some goals coming up. And at least one trip planned. Over Halloween my family and I will be heading out to a city about 4 hours south of here for a band competition for my oldest daughter. Halloween is about 9 kinds of triggers all in itself, and with a 72 hour trip thrown in? It has all of the earmarks of personal backsliding and disaster.

And so it will be, if I do nothing between now and the end of October to get ready and make some plans. But I don't intend to allow this to kill the goodness that I'm doing. To be honest, the dietbet is going to go a long way in making sure that I'll keep on track. There's something about the accountability that I just love.

But that won't be enough. So - in the interim, I have to make sure that I've stuck with my eating and exercise, that I've created even more good habits, and that I've made an actual PLAN about how to deal with the weekend.

That is on its way. Before I leave, I will have my written plan for how to not just survive the weekend, but to lose more weight while I'm gone.

I do know that the one uncomditional MUST be - I won't eat any candy of any sort. I may have a treat of some kind that day, but it won't be sugar.

Time to get to work - but I will try to post later about my workout.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Fallout from yesterday

Well, I didn't eat much yesterday other than lunch. I had a yogurt smoothie in the evening, but that was it.

This morning I weighed again. I was down .4. I'm quite happy with that.

I can do this. I can go out - EVERY SO OFTEN - without any ill effects. But - and here's what I think is the key - it has to be the rare exception, and not the rule. And when I go, I have to keep within the realm of what a normal human being should eat.

Here is part of my problem: I think that the little sensor in my stomach - whatever it is that tells the brain that you're full - is broken. I left lunch yesterday, after eating too much food, and I still felt hungry. In the past, I'd stop when I was feeling uncomfortable - I could feel the physical fullness to where it hurt - and I would still feel hungry.

So I need to pay meticulous attention to what I eat. If I pay attention, don't go too nuts, and only do this occasionally, then everything is going to be all right.

That's the theory. We'll see how practice goes.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Cravings. What?

Yeah, so cravings hit yesterday a bit harder than I had expected. For the first time in a few weeks there was some serious temptation. Didn't give in, that's what's most important, but man, this stuff is hard.

Oddly enough it was the day before I went out to lunch with work. We hit a milestone, and my boss took us all to a local Brazilian grill. Quite happy with how it went - Ate a huge salad, kept myself to WAY less meat than I wanted. Still, it was way more calories than I usually eat.

I had thought that we might do something like that today, so I didn't eat breakfast. I'm pretty sure that dinner will be just a protein shake, so I should be good for the day.

The good news is that it was fairly easy to stick to no refined carbs. Two very small pieces of bread - about the size of a silver dollar. That was it. But man, the meat...LOTS of yummy skewered meat. Too good.

I did also stick to the diet soda. Even though their bottomless flavored Brazilian lemonades are incredible. No point in drinking an extra thousand calories.

I know that in my life things like this are going to happen. There is no way that for the rest of my life I won't go out to eat. It's a part of the culture that I live in. So I'm going to see how this goes today. And then tomorrow. And then the weekend. If I'm still good on Monday, I'll be good.

Speaking of the weekend - I'm going to be adding back in just a few types of carbs starting Saturday. One slice of wheat bread, maybe a tortilla, things like that. I don't want to go back to eating peanut butter sandwiches all day long, but I need some more carbs.

Still - I want to keep off of what my trainer calls "Crack carbs." Those things that you eat a little and crave them. No sugar. No sugar drinks. Keep off of the cookies/cake. At the very least until I get much closer to weight.

I'm conflicted about what to do about desserts and the like for the rest of my life. On one hand, I'd like to be able to have a treat here and there. On the other hand, I know what they do to me.

For now, though, I'm keeping those things out of either hand.

Moving forward...

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Another day, another loss.

Mind you, it's only down .2. But that is 700 calories that I will never have to lose again. Or at least, that's the idea.

I'm going to try out posting some similar topics every day to see if it can keep me thinking about the things that I need to think about.

Where's my head:

Cravings are at a bit of a minimum so far today. I haven't actually eaten anything yet, and it's 10:30 - yes, that's a bad thing, but since I got to work I've been BUSY.

This means to me that I need to have more low-calorie snacks on hand. A few almonds and an apple would have been very welcome.

There is a better than even chance that my boss will take us out for lunch tomorrow. Happy day, we've released some new features, and they have been a hit - the whole process has gone off without a hitch. A celebration, apparently, is in order.

I'll have to see what I can do to steer the lunch in a direction where I can get something that aligns with my goals.

It's interesting. When I started the weight-loss competition, I let everyone know. It was "official." But this time, I'm trying to go about it more quietly. I want to just make changes, not make some temporary "official" changes.

It's a minor difference in my head. I don't know if it's important. But I'm fairly sure that it doesn't matter, either.

Anyway, so far so good. I'll be getting lunch in about an hour. Not sure yet what I'm going to eat, but I'll keep it good. Maybe they've got some fruit downstairs right now...

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

What - I'm supposed to write EVERY DAY?

Maybe that's why my posts are becoming shorter - I think I need to do some sort of check-in when I post. That might give me something to talk about. :)

I can feel things working. That is awesome. But I can also remember what it was like to be a lot more fit - it was just over a year ago. So I'm impatient. I want to be there NOW!

But totally neglecting myself for over a year is not something that can be undone quickly. I know this - I understand this - I get this. And yet, it can be hard and frustrating sometimes.

I think I'll just focus on how my clothes aren't as tight. And how my belt doesn't hurt. And how I've actually been able to be happy with food choices recently.

That'll do. For now.

Monday, August 24, 2015

It works. Every single time.

Nothing earth shattering - if I eat good food - correct portions - and don't eat crap food - I will lose weight. It happens.

I do have to ask the question of myself - why is it that I don't do this all the time? I'm needing to try to find whatever balance it is that I'm going to end up having for the rest of my life.

I've cut out all refined carbs - no bread, no pasta, no rice (quinoa is OK), and ABSOLUTELY no sugar. But this is not something that I feel that I can do forever. There has to be some sort of balance.

So starting Saturday I'm going to start SLOWLY reintroducing just a few carbs - still no sugar, but I will have a piece of bread every so often.

Of course, I haven't been perfect on the carb ban - I went camping on Friday night. I had two light bratwurst sausage links for dinner and some Plumcots. It was pretty good. But in the morning, I helped the scouts cook breakfast burritos, and without thinking I ate one. It was a flour tortilla.

And you know what? I don't even feel bad. I needed the energy, and frankly, the bigger ban on carbs is the sugar. And my cravings have gone way down. Not to zero - I don't think they will ever go away - but they have lessened to about 15-20% of what they used to be.

I need to do an official weigh-in - that is with a pic and everything, but my weight is now 284.6. The official start of the dietbet is 297, and I'm nearly 100% sure that in the week after it started that i went up between 2 and 4 pounds before heading back down.

So like I said, this is working. I'm pretty stoked about it. I've got some goals that I've set for myself, and I'm hitting all of them.

And I am FINALLY starting to feel some differences in how my clothes are fitting.

This is hard stuff. I have to continually watch what it is that I'm eating and fighting against what it is that I really want to do.

But it is working. And so far, that is enough to keep it going.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Finally starting to notice the changes.

There usually comes a point when I'm doing well where I can start to feel changes. Today I have reached that point. I love when this happens. It helps to create the positive feedback loop - I do well, so I feel better and notice changes, which makes it easier to do well, which brings more positive changes...

I've been here before. I keep pondering on how to try to keep this going long term. I'm fairly sure that I've got to pretty much keep all of the crap carbs out of my life. I know I won't be this low carb my whole life. But there are certain habits that I can't go back to.

I've got some thinking to do. And some planning.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wow - missed a day.

Sometimes days go by so fast. Yesterday was one of them.

I'm kind of glad. Yesterday morning I weighed myself, and I had gone up two pounds from last Saturday. NOT the kind of thing you like to see.

Still, I know that weight fluctuates, and this is normal. So this morning's weight was 4.2 pounds down from yesterday.

I'm a happy camper.

It's times like these that make saying "no" to all of the foods that I turn down worth it.

I am worth it.

Speaking of that...time for lunch. ;)

Monday, August 17, 2015

Another Monday morning

So I "ran" a 10K on Saturday. I put the "ran" in quotes, not because I was slow, but because I did not run all 6.1 miles. I think I would have been able to do much better, but I have to say that cutting out most carbohydrates the week before a race is NOT the best way to get a good time.

Not that I care, mind you. I was just happy to go all the way to the end. The only real issue is that without any carbs, I had ZERO energy after about mile 3.

I did decide to eat a piece of bread with peanut butter on the morning of the race. It was probably the right thing to do.

But I went straight back to no more refined carbs again.

Still feeling strong. Right where I want to be.


Forgot to add...

Due to some mixup in ordering, instead of a small trinket that finishers were supposed to be given on finishing, everyone got the large medal that was supposed to be given to the winners. :) Kinda fun.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Easing up a bit?

Maybe it's just early on in the day. Maybe it's the fact that it's DAY 7...but so far the cravings have been significantly less.

I do know that I should probably tweak my intake a bit. I need more carbohydrates. I have been feeling slightly strange, in that I can feel that I do not have enough energy. So I am going to add even more fruit and veggies. Especially fruit, which is a happy thought.

I am feeling good about things today, though. I'm somewhere around 8 pounds down in the last week alone. Water weight some of it, but all of it happy.

I'm going to go get something to drink and eat an apple and some carrots. I'll be back later.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


I've been trying to find something that is a bit of a treat. I actually think I found it yesterday...

1 C skim milk
1 scoop Chocolate protein powder
1 small handful ice
1 tsp creamy peanut butter


I had a TON of calories left over yesterday, so I made a double batch. It was INCREDIBLE.

I'll be looking for more recipes in the coming days. Anyone have any good ones?

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

There is always a choice.

I have a party for work tonight. Dinner was a barbecue. I was rather worried about finding something I can eat. Next month I'd eat the burger. But today, so soon after restricting? Not yet. 

So here is what I found:

That works for me. 

Struggling. But not how you'd think.

OK - full disclosure - I am struggling not to eat any carbs. But I'm winning that struggle. That one I can live with.

The struggle that is causing problems right now is internal.

I've lost a lot of weight, and been down to goal. Twice now.

There was a day, after losing all of the weight the first time, that a friend came up to me and asked how I did it. (He's a Physical Therapist, and very much into health). When I told him it was a combination of eating less and moving more, he told me that he wished everyone would do that, instead of <insert anything here>. Then he told me about his wife's comment - that she had noticed how much weight I had lost. It made me feel good.

During the second weight loss, after about 40 pounds, another friend came up to me and asked if I had lost weight. It was rather gratifying. I told him that yes, and that I had joined a weight loss competition. It was another good moment, made me realized that I was getting results.

It's remembering times like those that make me not want to be around those people anymore. Whether or not it's true, I feel as if they are judging me. They noticed the weight loss, what makes me think that they won't notice the weight gain? It's not like it was a subtle gain.

I have to keep reminding myself that I am where I am - and I can do absolutely nothing more than to make today a good day. All I can do is right now. I can choose what I eat. I can choose to move. I can make the correct choices. Eventually all of the other stuff (the actual numbers) will sort itself out.

Still...there's always the voice in the back of my mind...

Shut up voice. I'm busy living right now.

Slogging through the first week.

Good news is that I new it would be hard. More good news is that I've done it before, I'll do it again.

Bad news is that anyone reading this gets to hear me whining...this is still hard stuff.

But so far so good. Nothing passing my lips that shouldn't.

MyFitnessPal is telling me good news - if I stuck with this, in 5 weeks I'd be down about 11-12 pounds. To be honest, I hope to lose more than that. But I'd take it for sure.

Be back later today...

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Getting rid of addiction SUCKS.

Yesterday I had headaches and dizziness. Refined carb detox really does suck. But it is really making me realize how severely I have become dependent on sugar (and everything that instantly metabolizes to sugar).

I have also been chuckling at how many crap carbs come up all the time. From the first day...

Day 1 - Cake
Day 3 - Cake
Day 4 - Bagels

I've passed on all of it. I'm taking this detox seriously.

And the results are already on their way. Since Saturday I'm down about 6 pounds. Of course, a lot of that is certainly going to be water weight, but I know that some of it isn't.

The hardest thing is, really, finding stuff to eat. So much of what most people consume has bread in it. Or rice. Or potatoes.

Lean protein and fruits and vegetables. That's my mantra for the next while.

Time to get back to work...

Monday, August 10, 2015

Slow start, but WORKING.

My last post was about joining a 6-month DietBet. The first 5 days were trying one thing after another to get food under control. It didn't work too well.

It took until day 6 - FINALLY. I have decided to go drastic for the next month or so. I have cut out ALL refined carbohydrates. Bread, rice, sugar, flour, all of it gone for the next while. So far, it has been great.

I'm on day 3 of this. I did it in the past - back when I joined the weight-loss competition, this is something that my trainer had me do for a month. It is hard. I know for a fact that I have addiction issues with food, specifically sugar. Well, the withdrawals have kicked in - I have had some serious headaches since Saturday.

But I have so far been able to stick with it. If I am not eating too many simple carbs, I'm not craving as much.

AS MUCH, that is. I'm still hungry. But it is easier.

Once the next few weeks pass, it is going to get significantly easier. At least, that is what happened last time.

So things are good. I went the wrong way for the first 5 days, and I'm going the right way now.

Day 3 is fine. It's going to take 6 months to see how it truly works.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

DietBet anyone?

It's funny - I know what to do, I know how to do it, but without correct motivation, I don't. I have to find a way to be motivated for the long term. But at the moment, I need a kick in the rear. 

So I've joined a DietBet. I've done some in the past, and it has worked. I've done the 4 week ones where you have to lose 4%. But this time I joined the one that lasts 6 months. I have to lose a total of 10% over 5 months and then maintain for the 6th. 

The deal is that as little me as I follow my other plan, this is guaranteed to work. 

Weigh-in was this morning. I was distressed. But I am moving forward. 

More to come...

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Post vacation blues

I always have such great intentions for vacation. In the end it was OK, but not great. Post vacation I sort of lost my mojo a bit. No excuses, just explanations. 

Speaking of excuses...

I was going to weigh in yesterday. But my scale was somehow set to kilograms. And the switch to change it back is broken off. I did see my weight, and I believe that it was 128.9. Or maybe 130. My stupid brain doesn't remember such details. 

Doing quick math that is somewhere in the mid to upper 280s. I have fixed the scale, and I will post in the morning. 

I feel some good mojo right now. That has to translate to the morning. Let's see what happens. 

I'm back...

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

I'm back...

Scout camp was amazing. I'm frantically trying to catch up on work that accumulated while I was gone, so I may be scant for a while.

I weighed on Sunday - it was 279.8. Fantastic, but probably a significant amount of water weight. I'll weigh and post this coming Saturday, it will be more realistic. And hopefully still down. ;)

Be back soon...


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Another good day.

It's good to get on a roll. There's something about feeling in the zone that seems to make things a bit easier. I really can't tell you what the difference is right now as opposed to a week ago. Is it that I posted my weight online? Maybe. It could just be that I didn't give up, and eventually the re-start process is going to kick in again.

Doesn't matter. All that matters is that right now I am where I want to be. Or at least I'm heading in the direction in which I wish to be travelling.

I find myself obsessing over what I did and did not eat. I think that from now on, unless it's a massive thing, I am not going to be posting every single breath mint that I decided not to eat. (Yes, that was an exaggeration). I will, however, continue to post about ups and downs, and the big victories.

I mentioned in my first post yesterday that I have something that I am visualizing when I want some motivation...

Last July we went on a week-long pseudo-camp as a family reunion. (I say pseudo camp, because those who are "roughing it" are in cabins, and those who are not are in what amounts to a hotel. But it IS in the mountains!) It was a fantastic time.

I was at pretty much my lowest weight. I had been running quite a bit and was in great shape as well. I decided to take a hike to a waterfall. The hike is about 1.5 miles either direction. It might be 2. I wanted to do it pretty fast. So I did some trail running for the first time in my life.

Still, I took it sort of easy - just a nice steady jog for some of it. Uphill, mostly. It was a blast.

I looked at the falls for a while. I watched the kids playing in the water. I felt great.

After a while I started back. I did the same thing - part jogging, part walking. Nice and easy, while still getting my heart rate up.

When I finally got back to camp, I was at the bottom of a flight of log steps. It's probably about 3 flights of normal stairs, possibly more. Well, I wanted to finish quickly. When I hit the steps, I ran up them as fast as I could.

When I got to the top, I was breathing hard, I was a little tired, but in the end I felt AMAZING. I was in shape and I knew it.

That moment right there is what I keep visualizing when I need a bit of motivation. I have been there. Less than a year ago. And I know that I can be there again.

I just need to keep on doing what I know I need to keep on doing.


Monday, June 8, 2015

It's calling...

I love my job. They give us a ton of great benefits and they treat me very well here. But there is one benefit that I think, at this moment, I wish didn't exist...

The Frozen Yogurt Machine.

It's sitting down there, calling my name.

I'm ignoring it. For the first time in MONTHS, I'm ignoring it.

This means a ton to me. I don't know if it's a one-off for today, but for now it's good.

If I can just wait until about 2:00 PM, that's when they empty it for the day. It is never as good when they put the rest into the freezer, so it will no longer be a temptation.

Almost there, feeling great.

As has been my mantra for the past few days - I'll take it when I can get it.


Successful weekend, good start to the day.

Posting my weight on Saturday had the desired result - the weekend went very well, and today has started out exactly as I have wanted.

Saturday was a good day. I spent about 5 hours of it moving my younger brother's stuff from one apartment to another. Spending that much time walking back and forth and lifting heavy things can burn quite a few calories. I brought two of my kids with me (they are 12). It was a good thing that we went, too, as we doubled the number of people doing the move. While the kids didn't necessarily lift the heavy stuff, they did move a LOT of the smaller boxes. They were a great help.

Afterwards, my brother treated everyone to frozen custard. I think that it would have completely replaced most of the calories I burned, if not all of them, so I declined. It was a victory - not just in the ability to decline, but the ease with which I did it. My brain wasn't screaming at me to eat it. Which is a bit strange, but I'll take it when I get it.

This morning I haven't eaten breakfast yet, but that's because I'm waiting for the free berries at 9:00. All in all I'm feeling good, and it's about time, too.

I'm wanting to have a great week. One week from today I'm going to be on my way to Scout Camp with a bunch of scouts. I will be completely out of communication for the entire week. With all of the walking I'm going to do, I expect to be down significantly before the end of it.

Speaking of what is coming up...

After Scout Camp, I've got two weeks at home, and then we're heading on a family vacation for a week and a half. To tell you the truth, that is going to be HARD. I need to be in as good a place as I can possibly be before that starts. This is why I have been feeling rather desperate to get back into the swing of things.

That, and I REALLY do miss what it felt like to be in shape.

Another time I'll mention what it is that I'm visualizing when I need to get some motivation.


Saturday, June 6, 2015


In the interest of staying accountable, I have decided to post weekly weigh-ins for the foreseeable future. I don't actually know anyone who reads this blog, but I can still feel the power of the positive pressure. At least that is the idea. 

So without further ado, here is this week's weight. 

Not what I was hoping for, but better than it could have been. I do have to say that it has already been a motivating force this morning. I got up to take my daughter to a parade (she is in the local high school band) and all I've had so far is 16 oz of water. 

So there is that. 

I'm off to get a healthy breakfast, and then on with the day.


Friday, June 5, 2015

Ideas are percolating.

Today is, as I would have expected, still a struggle. But the fight is being fought, and so far today I am winning. I intend to continue winning today.

I have a bit of a headache, so I'm going to go get a ton of water to see if that helps out. Usually this is what happens when I get dehydrated. Yeah, I know, me and everyone else. Just spouting out a bit of my self-awareness today.

Some of the percolating ideas...

First of all, I think that what may help me the most is to get into certain habits. I have some bad ones, and I need to get some good ones to put in their places.

One of the habits that I need is to write down everything that I'm eating, at least for now. Last year, I wrote down every bite of food for both January and February, and over half of March. From there I was in a good enough groove with good enough awareness of what I was eating that it wasn't as necessary.

But until I get there, (and maybe after?) I need to write it all down. I seriously love the idea of tweeting everything that enters my cake-hole. I want to do this, but I do know that it will take making the habit. When something is ingrained in my head then it works. Until then...well, it will be a struggle.

Second, I am going to weigh tomorrow. If I remember, I'll snap a picture. If not...well, either way, I will post the weight by Monday. Saturdays will be my weigh-in day.

Basically it all comes down to accountability. I need it, and I need it now. So I'm going to manufacture some.

On an administrative note, I am going to be posting all next week, but the week after I am going to be at Scout Camp. The bad news is that I won't have much control over my food - we are going to eat at the camp cafeteria. The good news is that they usually have good options. The even better news is that last year I averaged about 17,500 steps per day at camp.

So it's a good day so far. Nothing of note, and that's notable.

Time to get accountable. I will try to post tomorrow.


Thursday, June 4, 2015

It all starts with right now.

I am never going to get to next year staying on track - or even 100 days, or even 10 - without TODAY being the day where everything starts.

I have done what I needed to this morning. I drove directly to work.

It has to start somewhere. And that somewhere has to be right here, right now.

So many thoughts, so little time. I should be back later.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Need help.

I've gone through this long enough now to see that the direction I'm heading in is, yet again, NOT a good one. I've also gone through it enough times to know that if I can just get going in the right direction, I have a good chance of getting some good results.

Going back to this guy again - he is an incredible model of stability. And recovery. Maybe this is what I am missing...treating this as a recovery from an addiction. I still don't know. But based on some behaviors over the past week, I'm thinking that this is the case.

I am in trouble. I know that I need help.

So I am asking for it.

Anyone who reads this - can you answer these questions:

What made you decide to make changes?
What got you over the "hump" to where the changes were now habits?
Do you have any tips/tricks/advice for someone who is seriously in the throes of addiction?

The first time I lost weight, I think it was the novelty of it all. I followed the Weight Watchers program. Maybe it was because I was going to be weighing in with someone else weekly - they wrote down the numbers. Whatever it was, it just worked.

Until I stopped.

The second time I lost weight, there was a competition at stake. My weight was going to on a big poster where the entire rec center can see. There was also a $1500 prize involved. I followed exactly what my trainer told me to do. It completely worked.

Until I stopped.

I don't have anything like this at the moment - nothing public, no prize, nothing.

So...any ideas?

I've got an inkling, but I would REALLY like some help.



Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Not quite the shakes...

Holy crap do I have an addiction to food. It took a bit to get in to work this morning without stopping for "whatever."

The most pernicious thought right now is "tomorrow." "Just once more today," the little voice in my head will say. "You can start tomorrow morning."

But as so many others have found and stated far more eloquently than I can - there IS no tomorrow. There is only today.

There is only really right now.

And right now, I am finally back on track.

Even if it is a struggle.


Monday, June 1, 2015

One thing down, one to go.

Halfway back in the saddle. Food choices have been iffy.


I did decide to take advantage of a benefit here at work. They pay for a gym membership for a single person close to work here.

So I've signed up. Today was my first workout there. I've got a spiffy new keychain code, and a lot of motivation to use it.

Working right now on a plan to get my food under control.

Does anyone know of any good online forums about food addiction/eating disorders?


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Days without diverging from the plan: 0.

Didn't want to post.

But no excuses. I did not make good choices this afternoon. Back to old habits, yet again.

Time for more introspection. I need to analyze what happened, how it happened, and what I can do to hopefully keep it from happening again.

I will be back tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Happy Tuesday

I am a Scoutmaster of a local troop. With Scout Camp coming up, I needed to get a physical. So I went to my doctor's this morning.

Turns out I'm super healthy, I just happen to be *gasp!* overweight.

So there's that.

It has been easy to stay within my calorie range so far today. I had to fast until the appointment so that they could get the correct blood work results. So not much food yet today.

I'll see how today goes. I won't like - I'm struggling a bit with cravings. That happens when I don't eat enough. I'll have to see if I can find some food that will fit within my calories.


Friday, May 22, 2015

Lunch went well.

Weird. I have a non-zero pageview count. That means that at least one person is reading this. That's kind of strange. But welcome. :)

The lunch today with my brother was fun. We went to a sandwich shop. Had a ham sandwich, buffalo dressing, no cheese, tons of veggies. 5 inch. Totally worth it. And no, it wasn't THAT sandwich shop. Yes, it was 5 inches. Somehow - they do 5 inch increments instead of 6.

After that, we went to a large open grassy field and ran my new truck around for a while. It was fantastic. A little chilly, as a storm is blowing in.

But so far so good today. I'm feeling pretty happy about things, all things considered.

And two blog updates in one day!

I'll most likely be offline until Monday. See you on the flip side...


More struggles, and happily, success.

The ups and downs are normal. I get that. Yesterday it was much easier to say no to the things that I knew I shouldn't eat.

This morning? Wow. I had to remind myself that actually yes, just giving in this morning WILL hurt me. That if I give in today, it's not like I'm going to magically not want to eat incredible amounts of high calorie food tomorrow. And if I give in today, then tomorrow will suck. So will Sunday. And Monday morning, I'd be right back at the grocery store, buying more chips and donuts.

It is truly a never-ending cycle. I have to somehow learn to just stay OFF of it. Today I have been able to do that once again.

I'm going to lunch with my brother. It should be a good time. I told him I'd like to go get a sandwich. Something under 500 calories, and I'll be just fine.

Until then - well, I've had a small breakfast again, and I need to keep everything else away. I should be able to do it.

Exercise wise - well, I'm not where I should be yet. One step at a time. I think that my next project is going to be working on getting to the gym again.

Have I mentioned how much I love/hate going to the gym?

I love working out, when my knees don't hurt. After I get past a certain point - there are many of you who understand - I really do get the endorphins. It's an amazing feeling.

However, this is also the same gym where I won the weight-loss competition. There are some of the trainers who are rather constantly there (go figure). I know this is probably rather narcissistic, but I really hate walking by when they are there. I know they know who I am. I know they wonder what has happened.

Or maybe they don't wonder. Maybe they've seen it all too often.

Regardless, I am always completely mortified. Yes, I know I should just get over it. But I am very truly ashamed of what has happened over the past 10 months. I have gone from very lean, very fit, to out of control again.

I feel a great amount of shame at what I have done to myself. The fact that it is so very visible makes it impossible to hide. Even though I want to so very bad.

I don't know if anyone recognizes me. I really don't. But it always feels like it. Maybe deep down inside I'm one of those people who judges others. I don't know - if so, it's buried somewhere in my subconscious. I try not to.

But it would explain why also, deep down inside, I feel judged for my weight and my struggles.

I don't know. But I think that this is something that I need to find out.

Well - this post has taken a very different turn from where it started, but I feel that it has been the right way to go. I need a lot more honest introspection. I need to figure out what is going on inside of me, making me tick, so that I can make some longer-term changes.

The struggle is real.

Anyway, there were some things last week that I posted, one of which was a list of "daily" things that absolutely has to be done daily. I've sort of let that go, what with being sick and a hurt knee.

I think it's time to bring it back up again.

I'm here. I'm fighting. And sometimes, I'm even winning.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Day off yesterday!

I spent the entire day with my wife yesterday as an anniversary celebration. Since our actual anniversary was busy, we wanted another day to just spend hanging out. It was fun!

Doesn't do well, though, for updating the blog.

Still, I'm feeling very good, and very calm about everything. Food yesterday was probably a wash - I don't know how much of a deficit I had, but I certainly didn't have a surplus, so there's that. This morning I didn't have any ill effects from it. I had the normal tug towards going and buying the crap - but it was not overly hard to dissuade myself. I really count that as a win.

So far today feeling good about things and motivation is medium to high.


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Harder before it gets easier.

I've been here before. I know this drill. I know how it works. This morning was the roughest yet. I had to very specifically tell myself not to drive into any parking lots except for my work. It would have been so very easy to just drive into the grocery store. Just some fruits and veggies. And a sandwich for lunch. Also that bag of chips, and...

Well, you get the point. I actually changed lanes so that I would have to cut across traffic.

This is the addiction brain talking, folks. I am at the point right now where I need to do things like this. I felt the "zombie" coming on. I felt the lack of control start to settle in. It's almost a haze, a stupor. I had to specifically shake myself out of it.

But I did it.

This morning was a battle. But for now, I have won.

1 banana, 3/4 C granola, 3/4 C milk. That's all until lunch, except for possibly some free berries when the 9:00 hour hits. Wait, free berries? Drop the possibly.

What helped me out this morning was, frankly, what I had posted yesterday - I am looking to get some rewards for losing some weight, and knowing that they were dangled in front of me, I told myself that it was worth it to me to make better decisions.

And it's true. But here's the catch - there is not always going to be the carrot to dangle in front of myself. I know that sometime I'm going to have to do this for much different reasons - because it's the right food to eat, because I want to care for myself. But right now, those motivations are simply not enough to overcome whatever pathways have been burned into my brain.

For now, it is going to get harder before it gets easier. And my motivations have to be enough to get me over the proverbial hump.

I am working on it.

But for today, I have conquered.

And that is enough.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Anniversary weekend

Happy Monday Morning!

Last weekend was a land mine of food. I went on an overnight campout with my two boys (and about 50 other people from my neighborhood). A couple of friends talked me into doing some dutch oven cooking with them. The food was good, but after a single serving, we offered all of the food to our friends. That's the kind of thing that I can do. What with all of the work that you do getting ready/setting up camp/running around the hills, I ended up with a pretty good calorie deficit.

My 18th Anniversary was over the weekend as well. Go us! It was a good time. We had a nice roast for dinner, didn't overdo it (especially since I'm really not that into gravy.) The kids made some brownies, I also didn't overdo them. For an anniversary weekend, I felt pretty good about it.

On the knee front - it is starting to feel significantly better. This is fantastic news. I am finally going to be able to start doing squats tonight. The last time I did any serious workouts, that is what I believe strengthened the muscles around my knees enough that they were able to stand up to the pounding that running puts them through.

So while I won't be running a ton in the next couple of weeks, I WILL be strengthening my knees. And walking a LOT.

Today's food so far - 1/2 C Granola, 3/4 C milk, 1 apple. Lunch today looks to be grilled chicken with green beans. Maybe I'll do the salad...

On a PERSONAL note, on Saturday I bought a truck for the first time in my life...

It's a 1/10 scale 4x4 RC monster truck. I've been wanting a new hobby for a while now - my old one was the aforementioned dutch oven cooking. While being a lot of fun, this does not lend itself to weight loss.

So for the new hobby - I wanted to get into something that had absolutely nothing to do with food. A nice RC truck seemed like it would fit the bill quite nicely. :) The irony was that the moment I purchased it, it started raining. And has rained for a lot of my free time since. But hey, they waterproof the electronics in these things for a reason.

I've turned it over a few times already, getting it scuffed a bit, but that's par for the course. It cruises through even the jungle that has become my lawn. (Have I mentioned the rain? It keeps me from mowing). I think that I am going to have a blast. And at any rate, while it's going, I am not eating.

This is the type of hobby, however, that can really start to become pricey. So - since I'm thinking I need some accessories, I may just have to see what I can to to have this help me lose weight. I'm thinking that for every 10 pounds lost I can get another accessory.

5 lbs - a second NiCd battery (for general crusing) - to kick-start me
10 lbs - a LiPo battery (they are more powerful)
20 lbs - the charger for the aforementioned battery (it will finally be useful)
30 lbs - another LiPo battery
40 lbs - the dual battery attachment kit

I'll see where I go from there.

I'm liking the idea of rewarding myself with non-food items that will make me more and more excited to not eat crap.

As a side note - this has already worked. This morning, when getting up, my brain was telling me to go back to the store again to buy crap. That hey, one more day won't hurt, and I can just start tomorrow.

I actually chuckled out loud. I was finally able to see the addiction brain for what it was. And I drove straight in to work.

So a good weekend, and an even better week in store.


Thursday, May 14, 2015


Today has been so much better than the previous two. I am finally feeling like myself again.

I had hoped that some of my knee soreness was from the sickness - all the rest of my joints were aching - but it appears that my knee is just plain sore.

That sucks.

In happier news - it looks like this stupidness just as I recommit hasn't screwed up everything that I was wanting to do. It did make me lose some weight, as expected, although most likely it is a lot of water weight. Water weight or not, it's a movement in the right direction, and one that I can get behind.

Still - today I am doing fantastic. Ate what I should have for breakfast. Nothing more. Ate what I should have for lunch. Nothing more.

I need some healthy snacks, but in keeping with what I've committed to, I need to go later today with the family for some good fruits/veggies/etc.

I am NOT doing well with water - that's what I'm going to work on for tomorrow.

But for today? Doing well, feeling good. Now I just need to find a way to get some calories burned while waiting for this knee to feel better.


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

It never fails...

The moment I attempt to start becoming the healthy person that I want to be, there is always a curve ball.

I was hammered yesterday by some sort of sickness. I won't bore you with the details, but it was severely unpleasant. I'm just happy to be on the other side of it.

Still - feeling queasy all day makes it easy to not eat all day long. There's that.

Not a recommended weight loss solution.


Monday, May 11, 2015

I commit...

I commit to doing these things. Every. Day.

  1. I must ALWAYS stay within my calorie budget.
  2. I must NEVER go to the grocery store alone.
  3. I must reflect, daily, on my attitudes towards food an exercise. 
  4. I must drink all of my water.
  5. I will do my baseline exercise.


1. My daily calorie budget will currently be set, for everyday, to 1750 +/- 100 calories. No more, no less. For every 500 calories I burn, I may add up to 250 calories. (This is to keep my metabolism up, and keep me from getting too hungry. A big trigger) Until further notice, there will be no exceptions. (Revisit this...)
2. This one is non-negotiable. It is my achilles heel. It is the thing that begins the downfall of every single day.
3. This will be done first thing in the morning. Either when I get up, or the moment I get to work.
4. For the moment, the water I am going for is 96 oz. Every day.
5. Baseline exercise, for right now, are the "pyramids" that my trainer gave me. Pyramids are defined below.

More notes...

Food Thoughts:
For the moment, I am not going to put any extra restrictions on what to eat, with these exceptions...
No sugar drinks. Zero soda, zero juice. Zero.
I must have at least 3 servings of fruits and 4 servings of vegetables. I can pretty much eat this as will, but this is a bare minimum.
I must cut treats down. I am not yet ready to admit that I have to be done with them...but there must be guidelines. This means that any "treat" is not a regular thing. In general, have a frickin' apple. When treats come up, they must be under 150 calories, no more than once per week.

I am going to examine how this works for sugar. If I cannot make this change work, then I will revisit. So - 4 weeks from today I will be revisiting this topic.

I will basically be following the eating that my trainer had given me - 1/2 of my food should be leafy and green. 1/4 some sort of good carb, 1/4 lean protein. And that is an estimate - but in general, WAY fewer carbs, most of those the "good" kind, more lean protein, and lots of non-processed plants.

Exercise thoughts...

In general, I am going to be shooting for some kind of strenuous exercise at least 30 minutes at least 5 times per week. And 6 (7?) days per week I want to hit the 10,000 step mark. I need to be careful with my exercise, as I don't want any injuries. But I also need to stop making excuses.

Still - there are days when I just know that this won't work. Deadline at work, sickness at home, the kids' school concert - these things will trip me up. But barring sickness, I have no excuse to not do pyramids every day.


25 squats, 5 pushups
20 squats, 10 pushups
5 squats, 25 pushups

Basically, you start with 25 squats and 5 pushups, and every subsequent set you subtract 5 squats and add 5 pushups.

There are different types of squats - Sideways, forwards, wall sits, etc.

There are different types of pushups - standard, spider-man, plank, etc.

It doesn't take very long. And I truly believe that this is what allowed me to run as much as I did last year without having knee problems.

So there you go.

Or there I go, depending on how you look at it. I am kicking this off first thing in the morning.

Wish me luck...


Zen, and the art of calmness.

There have been several times in my life that I have had weight loss well in hand. Everything seemed to be going well, I knew what to do, I loved the idea of doing it, and life was good.

I want that. So very badly.

I am struggling getting there, however. I did a pretty good workout on Saturday - didn't push it too hard, but got some sweat going. I ended up doing 3 miles on a treadmill, with a healthy mix of walking/jogging. More walking that jogging right now, but it was there.

As of yesterday, my knee hurts. Makes me want to quote Yosemite Sam for a while.

I know why this is. When I started working with the trainer, she gave me some exercises to do to strengthen the muscles around my knee. That made walking/running way more comfortable, and I was way less prone to injury.

Have I been doing that? Nope.

Do I need to? Yep.

Maybe the exercises need to be a part of the "must do" daily. At least for a while...

Food continues to be a struggle. I know what I should eat, but there is something in my brain that is craving things I should NOT be eating. I know that this is a dopamine thing. I know that I'm basically an addict, just that my craving is for food, not for heroin. And yet...do I do anything about it?

I continue to mull things over. Which, I have just realized today, appears to be code for "delaying and denying the truth." I need to make changes. And I can't delay any further. Any more mulling, thinking, pondering, or ruminating, needs to be done AFTER starting my change. This means that I will likely have to continue to tweak and change what I'm doing. But for now, a "pretty close" plan is way better than no plan at all.

As of right now, I commit to the following:

  1. By the end of today, May 11, 2015, I will have my short list of things that MUST be complied with every day.
  2. This list will be adhered to starting Tuesday, May 12, 2015.
  3. I will post daily accountability about the list that I commit to.
  4. Before the end of day on May 18, 2015, I will have my blog layout updated to reflect the list of daily adherence.
This has to be done. If this is not done, then I am going to continue on the path upon which I find myself. And I don't like the destination.

So...look back later today for my list.

It's time.


Saturday, May 9, 2015

Early morning workout

Well, early for a Saturday...

It's 8:00 am, and I am sitting outside of my gym, waiting for my Fitbit to charge enough for the workout. Oh, it's probably enough already, but I am neurotic enough to want to keep charging for a few more minutes. 

After stealing the idea from a guy whose blog is here:

...I am trying to come up with a list of non-negotiable things. Things that, no matter what, I MUST adhere to, or I have not done what I need to do that day. 

First pass...

1) I must ALWAYS stay within my calorie budget.
2) I must NEVER go to the grocery store alone.
3) I must reflect, daily, on my attitudes towards food an exercise. 
4) I must drink enough water. 

I am going to refine those. But for now, they will have to do. 

I am going to draw up a list of secondaries as well, things that should be done almost without exception, but those four must be done with ZERO exceptions. 

More thought-work needs to be done. And then converted into work-work. But it is a start. 

Thanks Sean, for the kick in the mental rear. If that makes sense. 


Friday, May 8, 2015

Tired, late, but thoughtful.

It has been a good day and a bad day. Work was good, got to go to a magic show with my first grader, and hung out with my family in general. But food choices were, shall we say, sub-optimal.

I stumbled across a blog today that really resonated with me. I will post links later. For now, I have a ton to ponder. The good news is that I think I might have some answers to the questions I have been asking in another post. 

Time to sleep. Gym in the morning. 


The struggle is real.

I'm looking for something. What that something is, I do not yet know. But that something is the thing that makes the difference between the times when I do well and lose weight and the times when I gain weight.

Isn't it odd that there isn't a middle ground? Any maintenance is just going up and down the same 10 pounds, repeatedly, over a period of time. It isn't maintenance. It's serial gaining and losing.

I used to have another blog. This is during the time when I was first losing weight with Weight Watchers. It went so well - it was so much fun to watch the weight come off.

When I was nearing my goal, I wrote a blog post entitled "What makes the difference?" I was trying to figure out what the difference was between people who lose weight and regain, and people who lose weight and keep it off.

I spouted so very much wisdom. None of which appeared to mean anything.

There was a rather great debate with some great ideas. None of which I have appeared to have followed.

So what makes the difference?

What is the something that I am looking for?

I don't know. I do know that I read a few articles yesterday. Most articles on the internet are just stupid opinions by stupid people. (Case in point - this very blog.) But this one has resonated just a little bit inside, set off some things rattling around in the cranium. (Language warning - a couple of pretty bad words.)


I don't yet know what this article means to me. But I do know that the ideas contained therein make me think.

What is a positive feedback loop? To tell you the truth, I think that it is different for every single person. What is it for me?

Good question. I remember starting off on the weight loss competition. At first I did well because I didn't want to be embarrassed at the weigh-ins. Gradually I started noticing changes - looser fitting clothing, more energy, more strength. That made it easier.

And weigh-in after weigh-in I was out in front. It is even easier when you are winning. I think this is the feedback loop that the guys was talking about.

And then I started getting paranoid.

I think that may be where everything went South. I started eating even less and exercising even more to make sure that I stayed out in front.

One thing that the article talks about is making sure that what you do is something that you can do for the long haul. Don't like running? Don't do it - find something else to do. Can't give up pizza? Don't give up pizza. Find a way to stick it in.

Whatever it is that you do has to be done for good.

So there are my ramblings for the morning. I think I will sum up this way...

1) I need to find my feedback loop.
2) I need to find the plan that will stick forever
3) I need to do this now.

Because remember - tomorrow doesn't exist. Tomorrow never comes. There is only the now.


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

To Fat 2

It's amazing. The final weigh in for my competition was on a Saturday. It took until exactly the following Monday for me to start the backslide.

I deserve it, I thought. I have worked hard, I can eat some crappy food today. Easy. I'll be fine after that.

I hadn't even gone to the closing ceremony for the competition yet. That is how pathetic my attempt at maintaining my weight was. Just over 50 hours.

That was the end of June.

We had a trip planned to Hawaii over Pearl Harbor Day. By the time December came around, so many of my bad habits returned that I was already at 260 pounds.

By the time January rolled around, I was at 275. It was very embarrassing to stand in front of the new group of people starting the weight loss competition to try to "motivate" them. I apparently did a great job - I still looked OK, especially with a compression shirt on. And when you compared that to the before pictures that I put on my first blog post - it was actually not too bad.

But I knew.

And here we are. It is now the end of April, and I am sitting here at about 288 pounds again. This is after going up and down a couple of times. I'm back up.

I feel at a bit of a loss. I sit here, right now, feeling rather full. Every day like today I sit and think to myself that tomorrow - tomorrow morning is going to be the moment that I do better. It is going to work this time.

And when tomorrow morning comes around, I will be in the same place as I was this morning...

Just one more day. I'll start tomorrow.

Because addictions are like that.

I am in trouble.

I need help.

Anyone know where to start?


Thursday, April 23, 2015

To Fit 2

I've heard someone say before that quitting smoking is easy - he does it three or four times a week. Well, dieting is the same for me. I have done it over and over again. And as I have written before, it WORKS.

Case in point...

In November of 2013, I saw a notice for a weight-loss competition at my local rec center. I had crept back up - going up and down for a while, but mostly up - and I was getting desperate for something to give me a kick in the rear end. Back into all of my bad habits, I was only on the way up.

I decided to go for it. The entrance fee was $250. I had to commit to 6 months of working out with a team and a trainer, with monthly weigh-ins. I also had to agree to let my picture and measurements get put anywhere they want to put it.

The initial weigh-in was 302. I actually thought it was going to be higher, but it was plenty high. I STILL think that the body composition measurements - the body fat percentage - was full of crap - it said that I was 22% fat at 302 pounds. A quick calculation meant that I had 235 pounds of lean mass. I suppose that it was possible, but the fact that it never really budged over the 6 months, even after losing a ton of weight, meant that I think that for some reason their machine just couldn't read my correct body fat percentage.

Anyway, the experience was great. I decided from the beginning that I was going to go all in. Anything that the trainer said, I would do. She was great. Everything that she said made complete sense. None of the junk science about "detoxing," no liquid diets, no supplements other than standard vitamins. Lots of exercise to strengthen the core and help with balance, lots of cardio, and a significant change in food.

The first thing was to CUT OUT CARBS. OK - not completely, but all refined carbohydrates. This meant no bread, no potatoes, no white rice, absolutely no sugar. My carbs came from quinoa and fruits/vegetables. 

I have to say that I was a little skeptical of this - I don't like low carb diets - but this was just for the first month. After that I was to start adding some things back in.

Well, it was VERY bad for the first few weeks. It is HARD to cut out sugar and as many carbs as I did. But I did it. And you know, after the initial hard part was done, it got easier. Much easier. A lot of my cravings went away. I was able to start saying no to things that I had just eaten in the past.

But after that, it got significantly better. As I ate better, I dropped some weight. Quickly. And as I listened to the trainer and started doing what she asked me to do with my workouts, I got leaner and stronger.

It was to the point that even at scout camp - of all places - I was not eating the desserts, eating tons of salad (though there was plenty of that to go around...lol), eating the best that I could.

At the end of 6 months, I had dropped over 84 pounds, ending up at 217.8. And I felt AMAZING. I ended up winning the competition.

As I may have mentioned before...when I do what I know I should do, this just works.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

To Fat 1

Weight Watchers is a great program. I don't think that they have enough emphasis on exercise, but in reality, weight loss is probably 80-85% (or even more) about the food that you eat. So it's a great program.

If you do it right, basically you eat a lot of whole foods, a lot of fresh foods, low fat, high fiber...you know, all of the stuff that you know you should be eating.

If you go off of the program, it doesn't work anymore.

It took a little while, but slowly the bad habits came back. Eating crap whenever it came up, drinking sugared soda, not really caring about what I was eating. And then I did start caring, but in the wrong way.

Weight has a way of starting to creep back on. And remember what I wrote about having an un-diagnosed eating disorder? Well, a few years of that, and I gained back about 90% of what I lost.


Over the ensuing years, I went up and down some. I ended up doing fairly well for a while, and got down to 250 or so before a trip to Hawaii. I SHOULD have been down to 230, but for the month before the trip I relaxed again.

If there's one thing that I know, it is that I can lose weight. When I follow a program, it WORKS. When I exercise 5-6 days a week, I love it. But it is HARD. It really is.

I'm not complaining. The fact that I CAN lose weight is a comfort. I know people that no matter how hard they try it just doesn't work. But I am also not going to minimize what it is that I get to deal with. This. Is. Hard.

So in the end, I end up at around 300 pounds again, losing and gaining the same 10 pounds or so. But always a slight upward trend.

Friday, April 3, 2015

To Fit 1

There comes a time when you get sick of being fat. If I remember correctly, that time was when I saw the picture that I put in my last post - the one where I was pushing the stroller. It was hard to see - it still is.

I also had a CPAP machine to treat my Sleep Apnea. I had a VERY severe case, and without treatment, I was having trouble staying awake driving to my college classes in the morning. So that sucked.

I knew that I had to do something. It was sometime around spring of 2004, I think, that I first walked into a Weight Watchers building. That's how I know exactly how much I weighed - that was my initial weigh in. 336.4 pounds.

It was kind of liberating. The plan was fairly simple. The stupid slider for points calculation was weird, but it was not rocket science. And once I got to know how many points everything was, I started cruising along.

I had talked with my doctor about what my goal weight should be, because the height/weight proportion thing will NEVER work for me. He told me that 210 would be a very healthy weight.

I don't know why, but for some reason my eating disorder took a back seat to correct eating. I really was able to follow the plan. For about 10 months. I started playing basketball with some friends in the neighborhood three mornings a week. At first it was tough, but once I got down below about 290, something switched, and it got much easier, and a lot of fun.

Then came the day that I jumped up and landed on another guy's foot. Turns out that's a bad thing. I had what's called an evulsion fracture on my ankle - one of the tendons (I think?) in my ankle pulled a chunk of bone off. It's better than the tendon stretching or snapping, but it was painful.

As a part of the physical therapy after it got better, they told me that I should take up running, that it would be good for my ankle.

Who would have known that I would enjoy it. Somehow, after thinking for all of my life that I hated running, that it would turn out to be my favorite form of exercise.

Well, I continued running and playing basketball. In the end, I bottomed out at about 203 pounds. I was thin and healthy, I was in shape, I was happy. This was around February of 2005. It was awesome.

Then I learned some things about what happens when you lose a lot of weight...

Thursday, April 2, 2015


I have an un-diagnosed eating disorder and food addiction (especially sugar). I am 100% sure of it. I am not making an excuse. I am trying to think things through so that I am able to analyze enough to make some real, lasting changes.

Why do I think I have an eating disorder? I eat way too much crap. Pretty much anything that I can get my hands on and stuff into the cake-hole.

Sugar, carbs, fat, liquid sugar...I am not sure that I care. I do know that no matter how many times I tell myself at the end of the day when I'm feeling fat, bloated and gross, that tomorrow I am going to do better...EVERY TIME I make another justification why it's not going to happen today. Just one more day. It won't make a difference.

Bull crap.

Why do I think it's an eating disorder? First of all is the sheer volume of crap that I put down on a daily basis when I'm not in the right place.

So where did I end up?

I started off getting married probably at about 235. I'm a tall, muscled guy, but I was still a bit overweight. Not a ton - it didn't show too much in the wedding pics, but it was there if you know what to look for.

Weird. The train of thought just took me to think about our engagement photos vs. our wedding photos. Our engagement photo, I was small. I looked great! Thinking about the wedding photo, like I said, it is there, if you know what to look for.

Being me, I know what to look for.

Side note off...

Well, that was in the spring of 1997. In the spring of 2003, I believe, I topped out at 336.4 pounds. Yes, that's 100 pounds in 6 years. Frankly, that is NOT tough to do. Basically if you eat 100 extra calories per day for 6 years...BAM. 100 pounds.

We were not ready to be on our own. I never learned how to eat, what to eat, how to be healthy. All I learned is that now that we are on our own, and cooking can be tiring, and Little Caesars is cheap...well, in the end, I took the easy route, time and time again.

And then add to that the un-diagnosed eating disorder. I started getting chips, soda, and candy to eat all day long. If you read my last post, you know that I'm a geek. Well, I sit at a desk all day for work. These two combinations are NOT good.

So that is how I got to be where I am.

Coming Up Next..."To Fit."

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Initialization Started...

Where to start?

I really don't know where to start.

The title of the post tells you a lot about me. I'm an unapologetic geek, through and through. I always will be. Software Engineer by trade, husband and father by choice.

Let's talk about some other choices, while we're at it.

I have a very seriously screwed up relationship with food. From my early life, I didn't learn to eat healthy food. I put the blame squarely on my own shoulders. As a kid, when I had the chance, I would take the box of Captain Crunch to my room and just eat the entire box.

Or after doing my paper route, I would sometimes stop by the grocery store on the way home to pick up apple fritters and cold milk.

Still, as a kid, you have a pretty good metabolism. I never really good too overweight. I struggled with it some, but when I hit high school and my growth spurt, everything was OK.

After high school, I found that a roommate in college and I could each get a medium pizza for $2.50 each. Also, I found out that Ramen Noodles were VERY cheap. And I could eat a lot of them.

Getting married, I wasn't very overweight. I am now. Very overweight. What happened?

Well, that is to come.

Right now, all I know is that I have to recommit. All over again. Re-recommit? Well, if that's how we're going to do it, it would have to be a (re-)^n commit. And if you get that, you are also a geek. I'm just sayin'.

For now, I need to go back to basics. There is something that I need to do, most of all - and that is simply to drive straight to work. My biggest thing is stopping to get food on the way to work. And I use the word "food" loosely.

Second most important thing, and this goes hand in hand with the first, is to drive to the gym instead. I haven't been going to the gym.

Why am I going to do this? I miss some things. I miss feeling strong. I miss the endorphins when I do a long workout. I miss fitting in clothes again.

As of this morning, I weigh 288 pounds.

That sucks.

I have to draw a line in the sand somewhere. This might as well be it.

Upcoming blog posts...

To Fit 1
To Fat 1
To Fit 2
To Fat 2
To Fit?
Disneyland! Or, How to Lose Weight Over a Week of Birthdays and Vacation

Not necessarily in that order.